TPG: 10 things I miss about flying

May 17, 2020

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

As someone who usually flies 250,000+ miles and hasn’t been on plane since March 1 due to coronavirus, these last two months being grounded have me itching to get back in the air, just like everyone else here at TPG.

Want more travel news and advice from TPG? Sign up for our daily newsletter.

While I’m using this time to continue to rack up points and miles for and plan my next trip, I’ve also been thinking about the little things — even the usually annoying things! — I miss about being in an airport right now.

Here are 10 aspects of life on the road I’ll welcome with open arms once the time comes.

1. The unmistakable smell of Auntie Anne’s pretzels wafting through the terminal.

You know the smell. (Photo credit: Melanie Lieberman, The Points Guy)

2. The frantic last-call boarding announcements for the person *still drinking* at the airport Chili’s, about to miss their flight to

Ritz Carlton Cancun (Photo by Zach Griff / The Points Guy)
Ready to be back on the beach of the Ritz Carlton Cancun. (Photo by Zach Griff / The Points Guy)

Read more: 25 Years Too Old: A Review of The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun

3. The head-to-toe, rubber-gloved TSA pat down.

(Featured photo by Bob Riha, Jr./Getty Images)
It’s been so long. (Featured photo by Bob Riha, Jr./Getty Images)

4. The feeling of daggers in my back as I jump to the front of the TSA PreCheck line thanks to my CLEAR status.

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images
When it’s time to head back to the airport, avoid long security lines by signing up for expedited security programs such as TSA PreCheck or CLEAR. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Read more: Should you get TSA PreCheck or CLEAR — or both?

5. The excitement of walking onto a plane with delusions of grandeur, thinking your seatmate is going to be your soul mate — but it’s usually just another tired business traveler.

6. Trying to find the Uber driver — “Are you in the inside lane or the outer lane?!” — and time it *exactly right* to minimize time outside.

Vehicles from Uber Technologies Inc., Lyft Inc., and taxi cabs enter the LAX-it centralized pickup area at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in Los Angeles, California, U.S., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. On Tuesday, Los Angeles International Airport's ban on Uber, Lyft, and taxi curbside pickup went into effect while the airport ramps up work on its modernization program. Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images
We still don’t miss LAX-it though. (Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

7. Shopping at Hudson News, trying to find a healthy but delicious snack and coming up empty once again — and just going with mesquite barbecue deep fried potato chips.

Hudson News in Logan International Airport. (Photo by: Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
We never thought we’d see the day… yet here we are. (Photo by: Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

8. Waiting in endless Starbucks lines, wishing they had mobile ordering in airports.



Delta and Alaska passengers do not have to queue at the airport for their coffee fix as these airlines are now serving Starbucks Coffee in the air. Photo by Jeffrey Greenberg/UIG via Getty Images
When you gotta go, you gotta go — catch a plane, that is. Photo by Jeffrey Greenberg/UIG via Getty Images

Read more: The best credit cards to use at Starbucks

9. Eating nuts on a plane as if they are the most exclusive delicacy in the world — even when I don’t really like nuts, but they just taste better warm on a plane.

10. Feeling like Norm from “Cheers” walking into a Centurion Lounge, seeing the friendly check-in agents and countless TPG readers, and knowing I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be.

Want more of Brian’s thoughts on travel, points and miles, and much more? Sign up for TPG’s new weekly newsletter written by Brian Kelly.

What weird things do you miss most about being in an airport? Let us know in the comments. 

Feature image by Wyatt Smith / The Points Guy.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.